Volunteers are Ready to Help Prepare Free Tax Returns
BROWSVILLE, TEXAS––JANUARY 30, 2013-Tax season is upon us, and students from The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College will again be providing free tax assistance at the International Technology, Education and Commerce Center.
Volunteers from UTB and TSC, the Brownsville Independent School District and the United Way of Southern Cameron County will team up for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.
Volunteers will provide free tax assistance at the ITEC Center located at 301 Mexico Blvd. in Room F9 beginning Wednesday, Jan. 30 through Monday, April 15. The site will be closed March 9-16 for Spring Break.
“Last year, our student volunteers were very busy,” said Pat Celaya, Assistant Master Technical Instructor and site Coordinator. “We completed more than 1,400 tax returns. We enjoy providing this service to our community.”
Volunteers will be available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays and from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays. The site will be open from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.
Call 956-882-4108 or 956-574-4411 to schedule an appointment.
The free service is available to taxpayers who have low or limited income (under $51,000), individuals with disabilities, non-English speaking and elderly taxpayers.
Individual tax returns are filed electronically, which expedites an individual’s tax refund and the service is free of charge.
Qualified individuals should bring the following documents to have their income tax returns prepared:
- Copy of last year’s tax return
- Taxpayer’s valid picture I.D.
- Original social security cards for taxpayer, spouse and dependents
- All W-2s forms
- Information for other income, deductions and/or credits
- If electing direct deposit, bring bank’s routing and account numbers.
- If filing jointly, both spouses must be present.
The ITEC Center is one of several locations set up to help taxpayers through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and the Internal Revenue Service.
Other free tax preparation sites in Cameron County are the Brownsville Public Utilities Board, the Community Development Corporation of Brownsville, the Ethel Whipple Memorial Library in Los Fresnos and the Harlingen Outreach Center.
The university’s Office of Financial Aid will have self-assistance tax preparation for students from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Thursday beginning Wednesday, Jan. 30 to Thursday, Feb. 14 in the lobby of Tandy Hall. For more information call 956-882-8277.
Juniors and seniors in VITA Clubs at Lopez, Pace and Porter high schools in Brownsville and at Los Fresnos High School are becoming certified as volunteer tax preparers and will prepare free tax returns for parents and the public.
At UTB and TSC, the VITA site coordinators are Pat Celaya, Seth Colwell and Maggie Solis from the School of Business. They can be reached at Pat.Celaya@utb.edu or Seth.Colwell@utb.edu or Maggie.Solis@utb.edu
To get the most up-to-date IRS tax products and information, visit irs.gov.